I was reading over the first few chapters of Leviticus, and I wondered what in the world all those rules and regulations had to do with my life in 21st Century America. I was pretty sure no one expected me to grab one of my dogs, or sneak into the field behind my house and swipe an alpaca, every time I had a wrong thought or deed – or did so on accident.
I wondered how on earth the priests, not to mention the Israelites “in the pews” were supposed to remember the different offerings for the different offenses. Every wrong, purposeful or accidental, required a different penalty. Different punishments for different groups – priests, rulers, commoners. Each offering had to be prepared and administered in a very different, very complicated way.
As my dogs (and the alpacas next door) surely said silent prayers of thanks, I pondered.
As I pondered, a song came to my mind.
“Drawn to redemption by the GRACE in His eyes…”
Those passages remind us that because of His sacrifice, we (and our animals) aren’t obligated to such rigorous rituals. It isn’t the threat of losing something precious like livestock which brings us to repentance and redemption – it’s GRACE. Unmerited favor. It’s the grace we see when we look into the face of our Savior. He was sacrificed for our redemption, once and for all. It’s a complete work of grace that helps us live in right relationship, not the spectre of bloody fingerprints on an altar.
And all the animals said, “Amen.”